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New York Red Bulls at Columbus Crew SC Projected Lineup, Gamethread, and All You Need to Know

Crew SC are back to the playing pitch after a week off. They welcome the Red Bulls to MAPFRE Stadium for this Eastern Conference clash.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Red Bulls come to town Saturday night (7:30 p.m. ET) to take on Columbus Crew SC. Both sides have played just two matches on the season with Crew SC on three points after a 1-1-0 start and New York right above them in the Eastern Conference with a record of 1-0-1 and four points.

The Black and Gold will be without the services of left winger Justin Meram and left back Waylon Francis. The two were each called up to their respective countries - Meram with Iraq and Francis with Costa Rica - for the international break that MLS does not observe. Head coach Gregg Berhalter will have to replace each of them in the starting lineup, as once again he won't have his first choice group to roll out for the match.

Another player who might miss out for Columbus is Wil Trapp. The central midfielder has been dealing with an injury in training and Berhalter called him a game time decision on Friday. Trapp's absence would be big in a contest that will likely be decided in the midfield.

The Red Bulls have some absences as well due to the international games. Karl Ouimette is away with the Canadian National Team, while Kemar Lawrence and Dane Richards are both with Jamaica. Lawrence was a starter in New York's last match and Richards has come off the bench in the second half.

It will not be the best weather for the match, as it is supposed to drop several degrees below freezing during the contest. With that said, Crew SC striker Kei Kamara calls for fans to come out and support the Black and Gold.

Depending on other results around the league, the winner of this game could find themselves in first place in the East. Although it's early in the season, building a lead on the rest of the conference can go a long way, especially when it comes to the summer months in MLS.

This is your destination to chat with other Crew SC fans while watching the match. In the comment section below, leave your thoughts on the lineup, how the game is going, whatever you feel (as long as you keep it appropriate). Some of the Massive Report staff will likely be chatting back!

Projected Lineup

Columbus Crew SC vs New York Red Bulls - Football tactics and formations